This week on IF:Equip (www.ifgathering.com), we talked about the part of the Niceen Creed refering to scriptures. Scriptures are the fountain of my faith, and the foundation of the spiritual house around me. My spiritual home will have scriptures as the foundation, destiny doors that only God can open, walls of faith in action, and a roof built by sharing the good news of Jesus Christ with others.
Until I started participating in the IF:Equip Bible study about 3 years ago, I’d never read a word in the Bible. When I started reading the scriptures with that online community of women, I was scared I’d be shunned or at least ignored. But I wasn’t. I was loved and encouraged, and I made more virtual friends than I can keep up with. I’ve even met some of them in real life! Reading everyone’s thoughts and interpretations in the comments taught me so much.
“Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding” Proverbs 3:6
Leaning not on my own understanding, but praying for wisdom and understanding, I open my heart and let the scriptures come alive to me. And while the Word never changes, His words are charged with energy. That charge changes who I am and how I think. What other book does that?
I always pray for the Holy Spirit to help me understand what I’m reading and how to make it applicable to my life.
Sometimes I set out to read the Bible for a while, and after just a few sentences, I’m awe struck at what I’ve read, and read it over and over, having had some new revelation. Some days I just meditate on a line or two, or just one parable.
Today, when reading the lesson on IF:Equip I stopped at the words “God has written a book“. Wow, how exciting! If I’d read Jennie Allen had written a book, I’d be on Amazon placing my order right now. I would, I have. I have shelves full of books written by numerous Christian authors that I’ve never read. And you know why? Because I needed to read the Bible first. Yes, I really want to read all these books I have. I want to read what Jennie A., Amena B., Lisa T., Ann V, and so many others have to say. But what I needed to read first was the Bible, specifically because I was so new, and 36 years old, and needed to build the foundation of my faith that’s found in the scriptures.
And so they sit, unread, all those books. I’m going to get to them one day soon. It was my very wise friend, Sarah, that explained to me that I needed to build my foundation first. Those books are wonderful, but they are in addition to, not instead of, the Bible. And until I’m regularly reading my Bible, daily, and reading it over and over again, I don’t want to read the other books yet. Actually, what I mean is, yes, I want to read them, but it’ll be so much better to read those books with a good foundation in the most important book of all. The one God wrote.
I almost started Jennie Allen’s book “Anything”, and the study that goes with it, a while ago. I got the book. I signed up for all the emails and everything. Then I decided to wait. I needed to wait because my foundation was not yet solid. And I imagine Jennie’s book will be, for me and my spiritual house, a wall builder, or maybe a door frame from which I’ll hang my destiny doors.
Do you know how exciting it is to have a revelation while reading a scriptures you’ve read several times before? It’s awesome! The Bible, The word, is alive! It grows with me, revealing it’s meaning as I grow in my faith, and it keeps on giving and revealing new truths to me in different stages of my life. What other book does that?
The Bible, to me, is not just a book, but The Word of God printed so I can carry it with me and keep it close for reference and comfort. IT knows me because HE knows me. He reveals life truths to me through His Words. And though they do not change on paper, they change in my mind and heart each time I read them and discover something new. Can I call it simply a book? No. It’s His Words, truths I want ingrained in my heart and mind forever and ever. I feel that needs an “Amen!”
Lord, help me to build the foundation of my spiritual home by reading and understanding the scriptures. Holy Spirit, read with me and guide my mind to learn new things from scriptures I’ve read a dozen times before. My Bible is my foundation, and within the scriptures I find instructions on how to build my spiritual house, which, when storms come, will protect and shelter me. The scriptures lead me to action, faith in action, that frames the walls and lays the roof. And though I’ll never be done building my spiritual house, it’s a place I can go that’s filled with all I’ve learned. I can bring others there and share with them the good news and we can discuss the Word together and build new rooms. As I keep reading the scriptures, I can plant new seeds in my spiritual garden and watch them grow. I can share this harvest with others.
Would you like a flower from my spiritual garden? Guess what I learned today?
Lord, let my spiritual house shelter me in the storms. Let the storms water the seeds in my spiritual garden, to grow a great harvest of knowledge of the Word, Your Words, that I can share with others. Lord, let my spiritual house have destiny doors that lead me on my way to Your will. Doors that move. Sometimes they fling open with a gust of Your Breath and invite me to “go, Bree, this way, toward your calling“. But Lord, let Your Will always be done, and slam those doors shut in my face if they don’t lead me towards Your perfect Will for my life.
I trust You. My Lord, my Creator, my Heavenly Father, my Teacher, the architect of my life.